Schimminger and Rath Announce Restore-NY Grant for Town

November 8, 2006

Assemblyman Robin Schimminger and State Senator Mary Lou Rath today announced that the Town of Tonawanda has been awarded $340,000 for the rehabilitation of Sheridan Parkside Village Courts.

The grant money is part of the Restore New York’s Communities Initiative (Restore-NY), a program designed to aid municipalities in rehabilitating or removing obsolete or rundown commercial and residential properties, making these sites attractive to residents and businesses searching for new investment opportunities.

“Earlier this year, we created the Restore-NY program within the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) to help revitalize communities and stimulate economic growth and investment,” said Assemblyman Schimminger. “This grant by ESDC represents a significant infusion of state dollars that will help the Town of Tonawanda make substantial improvements in the Sheridan Parkside area of the town, making it more attractive for residents, businesses and investors.”

“The Restore-NY initiative is a critical tool for creating additional economic development opportunities and improving the quality of life in communities throughout New York State,” said Senator Rath. “The restoration of properties like Sheridan Parkside Village Courts is a great step forward toward improving not only the visual landscape, but also generating optimism among area residents.”

Built as temporary wartime housing in the early 1940’s, Sheridan Parkside Village Courts has experienced decades of significant decline due to long-term deferred maintenance and neglect. During World War II, families were drawn to the neighborhood by the high-paying jobs offered at the nearby Curtis Wright aircraft plant and the former Linde facility, now known as Praxair.

“The Town of Tonawanda has purchased, or is in the process of buying, many of these substandard structures with the goal of demolishing them and constructing new homes on the site,” said Ronald Moline, Tonawanda Town Supervisor. “The Restore-NY grant will have an immediate positive impact by helping us moving forward with our Sheridan Parkside Village Courts Redevelopment Plan. The Town had been relying on federal grants from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to complete the project, but the Restore-NY grant will help fill a funding gap and will allow us to take down these unsafe and unattractive buildings much faster.”

The $300 million Restore-NY Communities Initiative was established by the State Legislature in the 2006-07 State Budget and is administered by the Empire State Development Corporation. Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis to municipalities over the next three years.